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Monday Night Rosenthal Bomb: The Chicago White Sox Sign JOHNNY CUETO....BOOM!!!

Nice little Monday night news dump. I fell asleep immediately after the basketball game, woke up to this news and said to myself, "yup, total White Sox move. Bargain bin shopping once again." It's not though. At least not quite. At this juncture, it's the best move the White Sox could have made, which is unfortunate, but doesn't make it any less necessary. 

First things first: there is never ever a bad MiLB signing. With this being an MiLB signing, there's not a ton of risk involved from the White Sox perspective. In fact, I kinda wish this was the sort of deal that the White Sox gave to Velasquez as I can't imagine teams were barging down his door to sign him and his, um, "lack of production in Philly" we'll call it, but whatever. There's never anything wrong with an MiLB move of any kind, aside from eventual 40 man crunches, but nobody cares about those really. 

At worst, Cueto is innings-eating depth. But he also has an opt out a little bit over a month down the road from now if they don't select his contract prior to then:

So the player is protected and the team is protected, at least a little on both ends. 

This is how I see it: even prior to Lynn's meniscus waving bye-bye, the White Sox were still looking for a starter. With Lynn out through June, they now need two starters. Cueto was the best option available on the FA market, and he wasn't awful last year over a little more than 100IP. Actually, he was pretty decent, so maybe there's juice left in his tank:

This was on a 107 win team. Not bad. Not bad at all. I assumed he was completely cooked, but maybe, just maybe he's not. He also had a few solid starts against good or very good teams:

- 5.2IP, 5 Ks, 0 earned runs, 5 hits against LAD in July
- 7.0IP, 6 Ks, 0 earned runs, 5 hits against OAK in June
- 7.0IP, 5 Ks, 1 earned run, 5 hits against LAA in May

Now obviously I'm cherrypicking stats from his best outings and trying to spin this signing in the best light possible, but he only had 3 starts out of his 21 where he gave up 5 runs or more. He largely kept the Giants in the game over his 115IP. That will be what he's tasked with again in Chicago. If he can do that, awesome. If he can't, they'll just cut bait and DFA him while looking elsewhere. The Sox REALLY need him to provide adequate innings once he gets to Chicago though. Like…. really need it. 

That said… SF's stadium is basically the Pacific Ocean and where batted balls go to die while Sox Park is the opposite, so I don't have my hopes set too high, but again, this was unfortunately a move they had to make. 

The most important note is this: the Cueto signing SHOULD NOT mean they're done looking to add a SP who both the White Sox as an org and we as fans are comfortable giving the ball to to start a playoff game. The White Sox lineup rakes, and they may need to rake themselves to a lot of wins in the coming 2 months until a trade partner matriculates for someone who is, ya know, actually "good good" and not 100 years old. 

Let's just pray to the Baseball Gods that Gio, Cease or Kopech don't go down for extended amounts of time. If that's the case, they're in BIG trouble as Cueto will be getting the ball a lot more than a team with "World Series aspirations" wants. Oh, and Dallas Keuchel needs to nut the fuck up too. For real. Make us as fans regret saying "Dallas Keuchel is fried and we need to replace him in the rotation." Use us or whatever else you need as bulletin board material. Anything that works, do it. If you need a steroid guy just LMK, I'll put you in touch with Eddie. 

Injuries have been the biggest motherfucker on earth the last two years. Damn the baseball gods! Damn them to Hell!!! 

PS - this is what they fucking get for letting Rodon walk or not growing balls and signing Ray, Verlander, or whoever else. You reap what you sow.